Photo from CNN.com
Who needs a fork and knife? Surprisingly, dolphins in Australia have been spotted trapping their food in huge conch shells!
The dolphins use their beaks to bring the shells to the surface and then shake the fish into their mouths, sort of how we humans snatch the last few potato chips in a bag.
What’s even more surprising is how dolphins tend to learn how to do this.
“Dolphins and other toothed whales tend to follow a ‘do-as-mother-does’ strategy for learning foraging behavior,” sad Sonja Wild, who conducted this research for her doctorate at the University of Leeds.
Dolphin mothers and calves typically form very tight bonds, staying close to one another for at least two years learning social behaviors and feeding techniques.
When it comes to “shelling” behavior, however, that particular foraging behavior appears to be taught through social learning among their peers.